COVID-19 Guidance for Vermont Schools

17 September 2020

Please note that this page contains information and guidance specific to Vermont schools and Supervisory Unions/Supervisory Districts (SU/SDs). Vermonters can find the most up-to-date and complete information on state and nationwide COVID-19 response, including information direct from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, on the Vermont Department of Health's COVID-19 website.

Guidance Index

Additional Guidance

21st Century Community Learning Centers Adult Education and Literacy Career and Technical EducationConsolidated Federal Programs  |  Driver Education  |   Educator Licensure   |  Homeless Children and Youth Program  |  Maintenance of Learning |  Prekindergarten 

Other Resources

Vermont Department of Health  |  Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development  |  Department of Public Service Connectivity Help  |  Vermont Occupational Safety and Health Administration (VOSHA) | Vermont Emergency Management - Food Help  |  Childcare for Essential Persons Information  |  Information for Families   |   Translated Materials   

Strong and Healthy Start

Interactive Map: Reopening Status of Vermont Public Schools

Wellness Check Suvey

Guidance for K-12 Science Laboratory Safety (9/17)

Clarification on Hybrid Learning Guidance for Inclement Weather Days (9/15)

Memo: A Strong and Healthy Start - Reopening and Assessment (9/2)

Water Flushing Guide for School Building Owners and Facilities Managers Before Reopening for the 2020-2021 School Year (Co-Issued with Vermont Department of Health and Department of Environmental Conservation 8/27)

Social, Emotional and Mental Health Supports During COVID-19 (8/14)

Safety and Health Guidance for Reopening Schools, Fall 2020 (Issued 6/17, Updated 8/11)

Safety and Health Guidance FAQ 1: Physical Distancing (Updated 9/9)

Safety and Health Guidance FAQ 2: Quarantine and Staying Home When Sick (8/19)

Safety and Health Guidance FAQ 3: Instructional Practices (8/27)

Safety and Health Guidance FAQ 4: Child Nutrition Services (8/31)

Safety and Health Guidance FAQ 5: Cloth Face Masks and PPE (8/31)

Safety and Health Guidance FAQ 6: Cleaning and Sanitation (8/31)

Saftey and Health Guidance FAQ 7: Physical Education (9/17)

Fall Sports Programs for the 2020-2021 School Year (Issued 8/11, Updated 9/2)

Memo: School Safety Drill Guidance for COVID-19 (Co-issued with Division of Fire Safety 7/28)

Guidance for Independent Schools with Student Boarding Programs (7/23)

Decision Making for School District Operations During the 2020-2021 School Year (Issued 7/23, Updated 8/4)

Hybrid Learning During the 2020-2021 School Year (7/15)

Access to Career and Technical Education (6/18)

Universal Screening Assessments: Guidance to Support a Strong and Healthy Start (6/9)

Update on Planning to Reopen Vermont Schools for Fall 2020 (6/4)

Leveraging Summer 2020 Learning Programs: A Strong, Healthy Start (5/29)

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School Closure Guidance

On March 26, 2020, Governor Scott directed school districts to make preparations for a transition to Continuity of Learning for the remainder of the school year. He further ordered the Agency of Education to continue its consultation with the Department of Health to advise as this response develops regarding school openings for some or all end of year activities.

Continuity of Learning (COL) means districts will be required to provide education services and related supports to all of their students remotely so that student learning and academic progress is achieved as if schools had remained open. Districts are required to make the transition to COL on or before Monday, April 13, 2020. Please consult Guidance on the Governor's Directive to Prepare for Transition to Continuity of Learning (3/27).

On the evening of March 24, 2020, Governor Scott issued Addendum 6 to his Executive Order which puts in place a “Stay Home, Stay Safe” order and directs all non-essential businesses and non-profits to cease in-person operations. Please consult Guidance on Governor Scott’s Stay Home, Stay Safe Order (3/25) for guidance for schools on student meals, childcare for essential persons and continuity of learning based on the Governor's order.

On March 15, 2020 Governor Scott issued a directive to all Vermont schools to conduct an orderly dismissal of all schools, and cancellation of all school related activities, no later than Wednesday, March 18, 2020. Read the press release.

Use of School Facilities and Elections (7/8)

COVID-19 Guidance: End of Certain Emergency Directives (6/11)

Guidance: End of School Year Gatherings and Celebrations (Issued 5/8; Updated 5/15, 5/18 and 5/28)

Memo: Continuity of Mental Health Services (4/8)

Memo: April Vacations and Regional School Calendars (4/6)

Memo: Continuation of Learning; School Calendars; Attendance (Issued 3/31; Updated 4/6)

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Special Education Guidance

Toileting and Diapering When Social Distancing is Difficult or Contraindicated for Students on IEPs (9/15)

Assessing COVID-19 Impact for Students with Disabilities as a Requirement of FAPE (9/9)

Disciplinary Considerations and the Use of Restraints and Seclusions During the 2020-2021 School Year (8/28)

Hygienic and Social Distancing Considerations Regarding COVID-19 for Students with Disabilities Returning to In-Person Education (8/27)

Considerations for IEPs for Fall 2020 (7/31)

IEP Template Including Remote Learning Strategies (7/31)

Continuing of Special Education Services: Provision for Students Turning 22 (7/31)

Considerations for Special Education Evaluations in a Remote or Hybrid Learning Environment (7/28)

Guidance for Special Educators for Providing Remote Counseling and Training to Parents of School-Aged Children (6/11)

Memo: Extended School Year Services and In-Person Services (6/8)

Questions and Answers Regarding Addressing the Needs of Students with Disabilities During School Closure Due to a Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (Updated 6/5)

Memo: Extended School Year Services Summer 2020 (5/29)

Distance Learning Planning and Tracking Form Template for Special Education Services (5/19)

PDF version

Word version

Payment of Special Education Personnel and Contracted Services During School Closure due to COVID-19 (5/13)

Early Childhood Special Education (Ages 3 through 5): Indicator 7 - Early Childhood Outcomes Guidance (5/11)

Memo: Initial Considerations for Compensatory Education and Extended School Year Services (5/8)

Implementing Transition Services During Remote Learning (4/14)

Template Communication to Families Regarding Special Education and Related Services During Continuity of Learning due to COVID-19 (4/13)

Supporting Learning While Social Distancing: Companion Document for Families of Children with Disabilities (4/10)

Responding to Challenging Behaviors of School-Aged Children at Home and Childcare Settings (4/9)

Questions and Answers on Addressing the Needs of Students with Disabilities During School Closure due to a Novel Coronavirus Outbreak: Volume 2 (4/6)

Remote Education Resources for Special Education (3/30)

Memo: IDEA Requirements for Educational Placement and Amendments to IEPs in the Context of COVID-19 (3/27)

Guidance on Universal PreK and Early Childhood Special Education During a Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (3/24)

Special Education During School Closure due to a Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (3/21)

Free Appropriate Public Education for Students with Disabilities During School Closure Called for in Governor Scott's Order. (3/17)

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Guidance for School Nutrition Operations

FAQ on the Summer Food Service Program Extension through December 2020 (Updated 9/15)

FAQ on how Summer Food Service Program Regulations Differ from National School Lunch Program Regulations (9/3)

Child and Adult Care Food Program Service Operation Guidance for Reopening During COVID-19 (6/1)

School Nutrition Programs COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions: Volume 3 (Updated 5/29)

COVID-19 Food Service Health and Safety FAQs (Updated 5/14)

School Nutrition Programs COVID-19 FAQs: Volume 4 (5/8)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) From Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) Sponsors During COVID-19 Volume 2 (Updated 4/13)

Waiver of Area Eligibility Requirements for SFSP/SSO During COVID-19 (3/30)

School Nutrition Programs COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions Volume 2 (3/27)

Best Practices for Bus Stop Meal Delivery During COVID-19 (3/26)

Additional Child Nutrition Guidance for Schools Offering Childcare for Essential Persons (3/22)

Guidance on Non-Congregate Feeding for Child and Adult Day Care (CACAFP) During Closure due to a Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (3/21)

School Nutrition Programs COVID-19 FAQ: Volume 1 (3/20)

COVID-19 FAQs for CACFP Sponsors (3/20)

Memo: New USDA Guidance on Delivery of Meals During COVID-19 (3/18)

Guidance on Non-Congregate Feeding During School Closure or Dismissal due to a Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (3/16)

COVID-19 Guidance: Limiting Cafeterias to 250 People (3/15)

COVID-19 Guidance for School Nutrition Program Operations (3/12)

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Financial Guidance

CARES Act: Considerations for Vermont's Approved Independent Schools (9/2)

Supervisory Unions and Independent Schools FEMA Webinar FAQ (8/28)

SUs and Independent Schools FEMA Introductory Webinar (8/31)

Coronavirus Relief Fund Applications (Updated 8/24)

CARES Act Discussion and Considerations for LEAs (8/14)

Equitable Services to Independent Schools Under ESSER: FAQ (7/31)

Federal Education Funding Planning Guidance (Updated 7/21)

Memo: CARES Act (ESSER) Application for SU/SDs (7/15)

Equitable Services Calculations for ESSER Funds (7/15)

Memo: Coronavirus Relief Fund Reimbursement FY2020 and FY2021 (7/10)

Agency of Education COVID-19-Related Financial Guidance (updated 5/27)

Payment of Special Education Personnel and Contracted Services During School Closure due to COVID-19 (5/13)

School Construction During a Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (4/20)

CARES Act: Initial Guidance from the Vermont Agency of Education (4/17)

Education Medicaid

Education Medicaid Updates: Extended School Year and Fall 2020 (9/9)

School-Based Health Services and Education Medicaid Telemedicine during Continuity of Learning Frequently Asked Questions (5/4)

Education Medicaid Billing Affected by Continuity of Learning FAQ (4/8)

Virtual Special Education Services Reimbursable through Medicaid Frequently Asked Questions (3/30)

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School Closure Guidance for Other Programs

21st Century Community Learning Centers

FY21 Planning Guidance for the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers Programs (7/31)

Guidance for 21st Century Community Learning Centers Afterschool Programs in a Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (3/18)

Supplemental Guidance for 21st Century Community Learning Centers (Updated 3/31)

Supplemental Guidance for 21st Century Community Learning Centers: Volume 2 (5/12)

Adult Education and Literacy

Guidance for Adult Education and Literacy Program Implementation During a Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (3/18)

Guidance for Adult Education and Literacy: Volume 2 (3/27)

COVID-19 Guidance for Adult Education and Literacy: Volume 3 (4/22)

Adult Education and Literacy Continuity of Learning Instruction and Assessment Guide (4/22)

Adult Education and Literacy: Initial Graduation Guidance for Students Assessing Below High School Proficiency on NRS Assessments (5/14)

Adult Education and Literacy: Guidance for High School Completion Program and TABE 11/12 Assessments During the COVID-19 Response (Issued 5/28; Updated 6/16)

Adult Education and Literacy: Virtual Test Proctoring Procedures for Continuity of Learning (5/28)

Career and Technical Education

Perkins Program Guidance During COVID-19 (6/16)

Guidance for Career and Technical Education During COVID-19 (5/1)

Driver Education

Guidance on Driver Education Instruction during School Closure due to a Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (3/20)


Clarification on Health Guidance for Public and Private Prekindergarten Education Programs (9/11)

Allowable Use of Publicly Funded Prekindergarten Education Dollars in Response to COVID-19 (8/21)

Prekindergarten Staff Qualifications and Instructional Models Impacted by COVID-19 (8/21)

Considerations on Transition to Kindergarten During the COVID-19 Response (6/5)

Prekindergarten Education and Continuity of Learning (4/13)

Memo: Suspension of Act 166 Activities and Procedures During Period of School Closure (3/26)

Guidance on Universal PreK and Early Childhood Special Education During a Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (3/24)

Homeless Children and Youth Program

Guidance for the Education for Homeless Children and Youth Program During a Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (4/6)

Consolidated Federal Programs

Consolidated Federal Programs Guidance Related to School Closure due to COVID-19 (Updated 4/15)

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Guidance for Educator Licensure

Educator Licensing COVID-19 FAQs (Issued 3/24; Updated 5/8)

COVID-19 Student Teaching FAQs (Issued 3/20; Updated 5/8)

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Child Care for Essential Persons Information

Supporting the Child Care Needs of Essential Persons During a Novel Coronavirus Outbreak (3/17)

Supplemental Guidance for Superintendents: Child Care for Essential Persons (updated 3/21) regarding Gubernatorial Directive: Provision of Services to Children of Essential Persons During Closure Period in Response to COVID-19 (3/17)

Child Care for Essential Personnel FAQ for SU/SDs that Operate School-Based Prekindergarten Education Programs (3/20)

Health Guidance for Childcare and Schools Providing Childcare for Essential Persons (3/22)

Requesting Child Care

Families with persons working in a field included on the Essential Persons List for COVID-19 Response (3/18) should complete this webform, which collects information to connect the families of essential workers with child care in schools and licensed child care programs that are operating to provide services now through April 6, 2020, while school dismissal and general child care service closures are in effect. Families can also call 2-1-1 ext. 6.

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Guidance for Maintenance of Learning

Please note that these documents provide guidance for the period of school closure prior to April 13, 2020, as schools are preparing their Continuity of Learning plans and transitioning to remote learning. This guidance will be supplemented and, in some cases, superseded by guidance on Continuity of Learning.

Transitioning to Remote Learning (3/25)

Maintenance of Learning Guidelines for Educators (3/26)

Maintenance of Learning Guidelines for Families and Guardians (3/26)

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Information for Families

For information on Continuity of Learning please direct families to Continuity of Learning: Information for Parents.

As you communicate with your communities about COVID-19, please continue to consult the Vermont Department of Health for updated guidance. 

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Translated Materials

Translated materials are avaible on the Vermont Department of Health COVID-19 Resources Page.

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